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Does the NIOD have material on Japanese camps and prisons?

The NIOD has a large quantity of books, newspapers, magazines, archive documents, drawings, and photos on this topic. This material can be consulted in the reading room at NIOD. The Dutch East Indies Collection (I.C.) of the Institute consists mainly of war memories sent in by private individuals or obtained through interviews with former internees. The Dutch East Indies Collection contains relatively few documents from Dutch, Allied, and Japanese government archives. Almost none of the Japanese archives in the Dutch East Indies were recovered. Most of the documents on the Japanese and their rule come from post-war institutions that dealt with the trial of Japanese war criminals.

The East Indies Camp Archives website contains a lot of information on the Japanese camps and prisons in the Dutch East Indies. This website also contains many references to relevant publications and documents in NIOD collections.

Published material

NIOD’s library contains more than 2,000 books, newspapers, and journals about the history of the Dutch East Indies/ Indonesia in the period 1940-1950, including a lot of camp literature. For an overview of the titles stored here, please use keywords to search the library catalogue on our website. The NIOD collection of clippings also contains material on camps in Asia (KC II 17), Japanese prisoners of war (KC II 37), women’s camps (KC II 47) and civilian men’s camps (KC II 59). The clippings collection can be searched by keywords, distinguishing between people and things.

Archival material

NIOD’s Dutch East Indies Collection (collection no. 400) contains a large number of post-war reports and transcribed interviews with former prisoners of war and internees. This collection also contains original camp documents from several civilian internment camps. Information about Japanese camps and prisons can also be found in the documents drawn up for the investigation and trial of Japanese war criminals, such as the trial documents of the Dutch Temporary Courts Martial in the Dutch East Indies; access to this material is limited. Finally, documents from the Federatie van ex-Illegale Werkers in Nederlands-Indië (Federation of Former Illegal Workers in the Dutch East Indies, FIWI) contain relevant information on resistance activities and the actions of the Kempeitai (the Japanese military police) against the Dutch East Indian resistance.

The collection of Dutch East Indian Diaries (Collection no. 401) contains more than 300 diaries written by prisoners of war and civilian internees during their stay in the Japanese camps.

In recent years, NIOD has acquired archive collections of various Dutch East-Indian interest groups:

Photos, drawings, and posters

NIOD’s image collection contains more than 9,000 photos, drawings, and posters about the time before, during and after the Japanese occupation. This collection can be accessed via the WWII Image Bank.

List of names

Our information on the names of Dutch people in the Japanese prisoner of war and internment camps is very incomplete. We do not have lists  of all of the camps – lists for POW camps are particularly rare – and the lists that we do have are often incomplete. The lists of names in the archive cannot be copied, as they are subject to the Dutch Data Protection Act (in force since 1 September 2001). These lists are ‘structured, special personal data’, which may only be consulted for clearly defined scientific or statistical research purposes. For specific personal data, you can also contact the authorities listed below.

Japanese Internment Cards of members of the KNIL and the Dutch Navy can be found through the website of the National Archives. The Dutch Red Cross collected the personal data of individual civilian internees and returnees during and shortly after the war. The war archives of the Dutch Red Cross have been incorporated in the National Archives in The Hague. The website of the National Archives explains how to submit a request for information from this war archive.

For information on former soldiers of the Royal Dutch East Indies Army (KNIL), please contact

Stichting Administratie Indonesische Pensioenen (Administration of Indonesian Pensions Foundation, SAIP)

P.O. Box 1263
6400 BG Heerlen

tel: +31-(0)45-131542

or the

National Archives

Prins Willem Alexanderhof 20
The Hague

P.O. Box 90520
2509 LM The Hague

Main telephone number: +31-(0)70-3315400
Telephone number for information: +31-(0)70-3315444


The SAIP and the National Archives keep the service records of (former) KNIL soldiers (both professional and conscripted). For the KNIL regimental rolls, visit  the website of the National Archives.

The service records of former military personnel of the Royal Netherlands Army and Royal Netherlands Navy are kept in the personnel archives of the Ministry of Defence.

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